Image: UBC Sustainability Website —

Sustainability in Action During Ripple Effect UBC!

At UBC, sustainability is not just a word to define – it’s a word that defines us. Through our collective efforts in education, research, partnerships and operations, UBC advances sustainability on our campus and beyond. Our goal is to commit, integrate, demonstrate and inspire. –UBC Sustainability

 From November 5-18, UBC Sustainability certainly committed, integrated, demonstrated and inspired with The Ripple Effect, a two-week campaign that showed sustainability in action here on campus! Whether you’re studying, working or living at UBC, it’s often easy to get caught up in your own day-to-day routines and it’s easy to forget that UBC is a living lab, and just what that looks like!

The events of the past two weeks certainly did an amazing job of reminding the campus population of UBC’s commitment to sustainability and of educating them on the many ways UBC integrates sustainability into everyday campus life through “ripple labs.” From cows on campus, demonstrating sustainable farming practices (including an appearance by an absolutely adorable calf) to a Stormwater Theatre Show at the cascading water feature (which certainly got a good workout during Friday’s torrential downpour) to Recyclemania at the Opera (showing how UBC Opera reuses and recycles set pieces), The Ripple Effect showed that across campus and a variety of faculties, interests and disciplines, we are joined by a common commitment to integrating sustainability into our everyday actions.

 (Plus, there were free granola bars from Agora Cafe, and I cannot even explain how delicious these are. If you haven’t tried one, definitely put it on your UBC Bucket List!)

Aside from the many ripple labs taking place across campus throughout the week, another key component of The Ripple Effect, was encouraging dialogue about sustainability between students, staff and faculty. This was done through an online Q & A where anyone could post a question, or answer someone else’s. It was great to see so many people joining the conversation and sharing their thoughts with one another!

Ripple Effect asked UBC to make a ripple, start a wave and change the world,” and I truly believe that the ripples of inspiration have spread! I definitely learned a lot about the many small (and not so small) ways sustainability is at the forefront of everything UBC does, and I’m feeling pretty thankful to be an alumna and an employee!

If you missed any of the ripple labs, be sure to check out the Ripple Effect Social Wall; it’s a great recap of the past two weeks!


All aboard the UBC Line! A 3D chalk artist created a life-like 3D rendering of what a station on the UBC line might look like.


More than just a pretty face! As Doug Doyle, Associate Director, Infrastructure + Services Planning for C+CP explained to a crowd of students, the cascading water feature at University Boulevard is both beautiful and functional; it acts as an important stormwater management tool, helping to reduce cliff erosion.